Role Reversals and Love Story Conflicts

Recurring Motifs of Conflict

-Brains vs. Brawn
These conflicts pit intelligence against brute strength.
-Rags to Riches. Stories about personal struggle for achievement.
-Good vs. Evil. Sets equal forces against each other.
-Role Reversals. Allows us to see through the eyes of the "other" and experience how others live.
-Courage and Survival. The conflict is usually environmental. Disaster or disease must be overcome
-Peacemakers. Underdog stories where the "good" are those who protect the weak or stand up for what is right.
-Tempting Fate. The conflict arises when the hero goes against the established order of things (the law, God, nature), sometimes for the greater good, but more often for personal gain.
-Fish out of Water. A character or characters are transported to a different time or place where they must learn how to survive.
-Ship of Fools. Several fully defined but distinctly different characters must navigate on an adventure together.
-Buddy Stories. These focus on the strengths and contrasts of the characters to overcome adversity and become friends.
-Love Stories. The study of romantic relationships that focuses on the trials athat bring two people together or tear them apart.
-Quests and Journeys. Here, heroes traverse space and/or time to retrieve an object or person only to find themselves changed through the experience.

Examples on Conflicts


Primary Conflict

Secondary Conflict

Iron Giant

Fish out of water

Buddy story


Fish out of water

Courage & survival

Ice Age

Ship of Fools



Role Reversals

Love Story

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